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Thursday, December 8, 2022

Springboks to play Wales in Cup friendly

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Cape Town – The Springboks will face Wales at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff on August 19, 2023 in a Cup warm-up clash, SA Rugby announced on Monday.

The world champions will kick off their title defence against Scotland in Marseille on September 10, before taking on Romania (September 17 in Bordeaux), Ireland (September 23 in Paris) and Tonga (October 1 in Marseille) in their other Pool B encounters in France.

The Boks beat Wales 2-1 in their series in July this year.

Jacques Nienaber’s players will, however, not underestimate the Dragons ahead of the global showpiece.

Prior to a 23-18 victory in Cardiff in 2021 and their Cup quarter-final win (19-16) in Yokohama in 2019, South Africa suffered four straight defeats against the Welsh between 2016 and 2018.

Those results prove that Wales will provide a proper challenge for the Boks ahead of the Cup.

“Wales have always proven to be tough competition for us and our results against them in the last few years are evidence of the quality of the side they are,” said Nienaber.

“The Rugby Cup is one of the toughest competitions in the world, and you have to be at your best every week to reach the final, so it’s vital that we test ourselves against quality opposition in the lead-up to the competition.

“With Wales (seventh) being in the top 10 in the world and holding a good win record against us in Cardiff in the last few seasons, we have no doubt this will be a strong character test and fantastic preparation for us going into the Cup.”

The Boks are set to assemble for their end-of-year tour at the end of October.

They will face Ireland on November 5, France on November 12, Italy on November 19 and England on November 26, while there are also two mid-week fixtures, against Munster (November 10) and Bristol Bears (November 17).

@WynonaLouw

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